Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday chaired a meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) where he instructed all concerned officials to ensure the safe evacuation of Indian nationals from Afghanistan within the next few days and also provide all possible help to “Afghan brothers and sisters who are looking towards India for assistance.”
Also read: India evacuates all Kabul embassy personnel
According to sources present at the meeting, Mr. Modi also said that “India must not only protect our citizens, but we must also provide refuge to those Sikh and Hindu minorities who want to come to India, and we must also provide all possible help to our Afghan brothers and sisters who are looking towards India for assistance.”
Nearly 140 people working at the Indian embassy in Kabul including Ambassador Rudrendra Tandon, staff at the embassy, Indo Tibetan Border Police guarding the Indian embassy in Kabul and four media persons flew into Delhi late in the evening in one tranche of an evacuation flight run by the Indian Air Force. Mr Tandon was present at the CCS meet and briefed the Prime Minister on the ground situation in Kabul.
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Sources said the CCS was briefed in detail on the current and evolving security and political situation in Afghanistan. The Committee was also briefed on the recent evacuations of Indian Embassy officials and some members of the Indian community, as well as some members of Indian media.
The meeting was attended by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, Home Minister Amit Shah, and Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman. External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar, being out of town could not attend the meeting in New Delhi, but Foreign Secretary Harsh Shringla was present. National Security Advisor (NSA) Ajit Doval, principal secretary to Prime Minister P.K. Mishra and Cabinet secretary Rajeev Gauba were also present .
The MHA on Tuesday has also added a new category of visa to process applications of those who want to come to India from Afghanistan following the Taliban take over.